Surprising line system - 145' cast [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Surprising line system - 145' cast

10-24-2003, 05:04 PM
I took a 100' braided mono running line, looped it and stiffened the loop with VIP, then put 35' of LC-13 on it to approximate 450 grains and a 10-12' leader. I tied a fat large rubber band on the leader for something to have on the end (handy for holding the line between practice sessions).

That's about 145' so theoretically if the drag chirps and there's a few feet of backing in the guides, that would have to be somewhere in the vicinity of 145 foot cast. Not a big deal, I watched the guys at Howard Miller Steelhead Park on the Skagit River cast over 175' overhand but that was with lines that had heads 65-70 feet long in front of the running line on 14-15 foot rods. That's a better setup for distance but it's not a good setup for coastal flyfishing by and large.

I didn't have it on a reel at first so I just threaded it with the running line spool on the grass, face up. With a couple of warmups I fired off a cast where atypically everything was just right - and whooosh the entire running line ripped off the spool like a spinning reel and flew out the guides, continuing in the air until it hit some trees. That was a lot more than 145' but it didn't count. What it did do was pique my interest.

With the far end of the running line conveniently exposed, I picked it up and tied it to the backing on an empty spool. The setup was consistently able to reach the backing knot during most of the trial. Of course I could never replicate that "perfect cast" again, but some of them were OK and the distance was amusing if not surprising.

When the drag chirped, it had to be ~145ft with a single backcast. So I stand by the claim :p

It's not a line I would use all that often, but it would be an excellent line system for large rips like Monomoy Rip or even big girl bar. Any river inlet during peak flow, or nasty surf requiring a real wavecutter would suit the tool. The gut of the rip in front of the lighthouse is out about that far this year, so I would like to explore that before the winter sets in. Where the clam neck drifters hook their fish on the Plum Island ebb in June would be open for business with this line setup too.

Not saying it's a cure all or even a practical line system, in fact it looks like a QD's ugly sister! I'm just saying that a little experimentation can yield some interesting fruit. The LC-13 is level and the grains / diameter does not transition from more to less over it's length, I wonder what a well designed head of approx 28-32ft with similar grain weight and better distribution could do?

10-24-2003, 05:33 PM
Wow!..You may have changed my whole outlook on Surf casting with a fly rod ....for next summer.....Did you get my PM about next week?

10-24-2003, 07:39 PM
I'll go check and respond, if it's fishin' the answer is yes (or at least I sure hope it is!)

10-24-2003, 08:15 PM
Whew!!!! Thank God you "only" flew the line 145 feet, now if you caught a bass on land using a rubber band, I would have to retire from the sport forever:hehe:
Seriously Juro, someday I've got to see that thunder stick in action!

10-24-2003, 10:25 PM

Prior to getting a 2-hander and fishing almost exclusively with on for steelhead and Pacific Salmon, I used 25# Gudebrod braided mono as a running line with floating bellies and looped 10 to 13 foot tip systems on my single had rods. I still fish trout and largemouth bass with a single-hand rod and lines set up that way. I taught a flyfishing class Peninsula Community College in Port Angeles when I lived there and had some students insist that I cast as far as I could with the head and braided mono set up. They measured casts of between 145 and 160 ft for the three distance casts I made with my 11 ft 8 wt Loomis rod, 9 wt head, and braided mono running line.

At one time, about 6 years ago, I gave very serious consideration to using half of a salmon double taper reversed so the the taper could be attached to braided mono as a long (60 ft + 15 foot floating or sinking tip) shooting head of 75 feet for use with my 2-handers when fishing large rivers so that I could spey cast to mid river on the Skagit. I decided not to because it is nearly impossible to control the drift at the 150 to 180 ft I would have been casting with a rig like that. And I didn't want to strip all that running line back in after each cast.

A stiff braided mono like 25# Gudebrod is my favorite running line. It shoots very well, has fewer tangles, and has a bit of mendability. I have fond memories of fishing Tricos on Montana's Missouri, Yellowstone, Clark's Fork, and Bighorn rivers with my 9' 4 wt and the braided mono running line with floating shooting head to cast to fish that you could not wade closer too due to river depth. Casting and effectively fishing tiny Tricos or BWOs at 70 to 80 ft was simply a matter of picking up the line, one backcast, and casting it back out to the feeding pod without false casting.

Robert Meiser
10-25-2003, 03:41 AM

I too have found the braided monos to be excellent running lines on the overhead... They do allow heroic distances.

But, Have you ever tried braided spectra... gel spun...Izorline...Lots of names... In the 250 to 300# range, this poundage to get the dia's right.

145 feet of distance is cool, but the hook set with braided mono running line at these distances becomes a real issue....Streeeeeetch !

You end up having lots of distance with very little hook set potential on a hard mouthed fish.

Gel spuns have nearly "0" stretch no matter what the distance, and the bigger dia's will not wad-up on the spool...And Oh lordy will it fire off the distance...Deck or basket.

Standard procedure out here for two hands in the salt.

Give er a try.

Bob Meiser

10-25-2003, 04:34 AM
Hey Bob, what does the gel-spun running line do to your hands after you set the hook? Is the larger diameter less damaging or do you guys wear chain-mail gloves like the knights of old?

Does anybody fish that Rio SlikShoter stuff?

10-25-2003, 08:02 AM
Try using 50 lb. flat mono as running line between the backing and the shooting head. I have a three weight set up like this and use it in fresh and saltwater. I get about 250 yards of backing on a 4 wgt. reel this way. I think I got the flat mono from Cortland.

10-25-2003, 11:10 AM
Yes, the gelspun can hurt! On a hard running fish it can cut you like a knife! A little duct tape or similar material strategically placed on your fingers goes a long ways.

Robert Meiser
10-25-2003, 11:15 AM
Hey Jay...

Not as bad as that really...But a good point.

Let me talk a little later, gotta get to the Ashland Clave, and am already late.

Later Skater.....Meiz

10-25-2003, 05:19 PM
the flat 30# mono offers amazing distance, but it is slippery to handle. The braided mono will saw through a wet left index finger when stripping. Too much stretch on either (@ 145'!).
300# spun Gel...hmmm. Sounds like a tangle would end the day, but worth a try.
People have threaded spun gel into the braided mono, but that could take a while.

10-25-2003, 07:41 PM
Great feedback and thanks for the info on shooting line options. The rationale for this experiment was not to build a fishing line per se. I've been the XRL route and have the finger scars to prove it, just never played with LC-13 as a head before. I tried it as a sinktip once many years ago - didn't like it and hadn't touched it since.

As far as braided line it was a total fluke. I was in the mood to experiment and I could not find an intermediate running line that could be spliced the way I want at the closest shop so splurged $8 for 100' of the braided stuff. I then figured what the heck spend another $9 on the LC-13 from a bulk spool. Really surprised me when the thing shot like a gun! Most everyone who tried it at the clinic today in Rhody shot it to the backing as well, and with such a junkyard wars setup :p

But a serious fishing line? No, I plan to try a number of things after this, of course they will include a real shooting line. The head is key, perhaps Rio's T14 is the grown up version of the LC-13 ugly duckling, or maybe the airflo heads. Or perhaps the big Rio Scandinavian head with all the floating removed, who knows. My point is experimentation for two-handed casting is a big part of the fun and the results are promising.

I also want to play around with express airmail system for big poppers (really big poppers, like can't be ignored poppers). I am thinking something in the way of the old saltwater bug taper heads or chopping a billfish line to suit to meet the challenge of 1" diameter livebody bangers or custom cut plugs from lobster bouys.

It will be interesting in any case.

10-25-2003, 11:12 PM
I came up 10ft short on my first try but hit the end of the backing on the next 10 or so casts. Its something to stand there and watch that head sailing out into the far far distance. Line management will be an issue in some situations but this was an eye-opener for me. :D

Junkyard setup? Sure!

Elegant? Definitely not!

Effective? With a "friendlier" backing You bet your a** :devil:

10-25-2003, 11:33 PM
Just to prove your never too old to learn somthing new, took my first try at the spey rod today and found that it was the same thing that I learned from the old market fishermen that came down and settled in the northern part of Rhody, and I thought we were just real good roll casters!

10-26-2003, 07:58 AM
You are real good roll casters! I don't think I ever saw anyone pick up the switch cast so quickly.

To learn the rest of spey casting, you'd practice the various ways of getting the line from the fully swung downstream position to that starting position for the northern rhody roll cast, using from 55 feet to over 100' of line.

For downriver wind on the left bank, you'd need either a leftside or cross-body cast if you're a righty. That's about as complicated as it gets.

It's very pleasant once you get the knack and provides distinct advantages in limited space conditions, not to mention another flyfishing adventure to the accomplised single handed caster.

Yesterday was pretty bad with a very stiff headwind (the one wind that you can't do anything about) and a lot of wavelets on the water to mess up the anchor. Therefore it was hard to get consistent casts in the saltwater conditions. I am not used to saltwater spey casting - I have to go wash all my spey gear now! ;)

As I mentioned, this casting style is absolutely tuned to river fishing but has many applications in any current flow fished with a swing.

The very different beach casting rods are a straight out and strip technique that are not much different from the single hander, but with more capacity. These are very different rods and casts.

I think there was more overall interest in the beach rods yesterday, especially in the coastal context of Quonochontaug breachway. I believe if we were on a river pool somewhere the spey fishing thing would have been more fitting.

But I very much appreciate everyone who came by and listened, tried the rods, and had some fun.

Special thanks to Peter and Craig at Saltwater Edge for the refreshments and the ideas on times, locations, etc!

10-27-2003, 07:30 AM

Try a longer head that is more in matching with the weight of the rod you are throwing. SA makes some longer heads that would work very well with the system you describe. One of the troubles with LC-13 is that is is "too" heavy for it's length. With a short amount of overhang the head turns over too quickly and the cast dies. I've seen you cast, :smokin: and with a distance casting set-up I have no doubt that you could cast in the 180 range or better.

By the way I have heard that braided mono can eat the heck out of your guides if you fish it alot. If this is a "fishing" rig you might opt for some level line for the shooting line in lieu of the braided mono. You might use the barided mono for backing once you get past the 150 foot mark.

10-27-2003, 01:23 PM
Regarding the myth that braided mono being real tough on rod guides all I can say is that I have a 9 ft 6 wt and a 9 ft 4 wt that I have been using shooting heads with braided mono running line on exclusively since 1988. The 6 wt has had more hours of fishing time than most people give to their rods in a lifetime.

I built the rod on a Loomis blank in 1982 when I was living in Cascade, Montana 2 blocks from the Missouri River. I fished nearly everday from mid-February to mid-December, stopping only when the temps got into the teens or lower daily. This amounted to some 200+ days astream/year. The rod still has the chrome guides I put on it when it was built, and they have not been grooved. In fact, I have not had to change to chrome, standard loop tip top either. This is why I know that braided mono eating rods guides is a myth. If you have quality chrome, TiCH, or Titanium Oxide guides (like all the quality rods currently on the market), you will not have a guide grooving problem from using braided mono.

10-27-2003, 01:58 PM
Juro, Braided mono is a fine casting running line for casting long and short distances. However, as what was mentioned, the line does have stretch issues and setting the hook at long distances can be challenging. Of course, most of the time you need not to cast beyond 90 feet. Although, having the advantage in utilizing longer casts and no stretch running line makes quite a difference. A few seasons back I was trying to figure out what I can do to prevent line stretch with braided mono. So I took some Power Pro and a three inch needle. I then proceeded to thread the spectra all the way through the cortland braided mono and 3.5 hours later, Eureka!! No stretch braided mono. Now I was able to utilize the no stretch in hooks sets beyond 100 feet. As mentioned earlier that braided mono may cause guide damage, I have not had any problems with guide wear. Good Luck, KC.

10-27-2003, 02:27 PM
What happens when you cast 145 feet and then hook up a 40" fish. You're already into backing :hehe:
Large arbor reels a must.
Get the fish in quickly.
This fall as I switched from fishless summer loser bum to Large fish landing blitz man, I found I needed to shorten the fight. So I started really putting the wood to them to get them in. More learning for me.


10-27-2003, 03:43 PM
I'll use any excuse I can to see more backing :P

Seriously, it all evens out in the wash (pun intended). Most guys cast 80 feet with a 90 ft flyline. They're 10 feet from the backing anyway. With a single hander, a big fish takes all the flyline in a heartbeat anyway, the rod reaches max power very quickly and you just watch it disappear. It's hard to get the flyline back (recall those cows at big girl bar)... and the fish comes later. I can put a lot more wood on the fish with the big stick and get the fish to hand much faster, even when starting at the backing knot. Fish over 35" will take a monstrous run and the more muscle the rod has the more control the angler has. I've landed many 40"+ fish with my single hander over the years where most of the fight was a helpless waiting game. Big difference with the bigger gauge weapon.

But I agree, not all circumstances require extra casting distance, sometimes the fish are right in the wash and it's a detriment. The long cast is not always needed, you can keep it in your back pocket for when you need it. Heck you can roll cast it over the surfline for the short game if desired.

But there are those times when long casts are a major advantage. The fly is in the water soooo long per cast that the probability of hooking a fish is significantly higher in blind casting situations. Covering a greater swath of water always leads to more probability of a hookup, plain and simple. Reaching more blitzes doesn't hurt. Swinging a fly in a rip current is more productive when the casts are longer. The more pops with a popper, the more hits you get.

In nasty headwinds it's probably going to equate to only 80 foot casts unless specialty lines are used. So the power might yield a lot less distance, but that's a big difference from a single hander.

The 1111 is rated for 11/12wt lines and once you find the rod's loadpoints it takes much less energy to cast over the course of a day. This same power puts a lot more wood to the fish, but the flex profile of the rod makes it a comfortable fight that won't explode your tippets.

It's not the everyday rod but if we revert to the spin rod analogy again - the surf spin guy has two rods, the sluggo rod and the surf rod. The pogie/plug rod lands the fish a lot faster even if it was hooked 90 yards out there where the plug hit the water. There's a right time and place for both/either for sure.

10-27-2003, 04:33 PM
Juro, in your initial post, were you referring to casting with a spey rod or standard 9 foot?

10-27-2003, 07:03 PM
Ooops -

Sorry I was referring to casting with a two-handed rod, not a spey rod though - there is a difference. This rod is called the "Atlantis 1111", by the CND two-handed rod company. I co-developed this rod with master rod designer Nobuo Nodera, head of CND. As a striper guide and two-handed rod buff, I have been in pursuit of this dream for several years and have finally realized it in this rod. Additional models will soon follow.

The Atlantis 1111 is an 11ft 11/12wt overhand casting rod designed from the ground up to be a top quality coastal flyfishing tool providing the next niche in flyfishing saltwater at an affordable price ($495 USD). The blank is constructed of IM8 graphite with premium components including titanium tip, Fuji SiC strip guides and hard chrome snakes. The cork is primo; the ends of each cork segment are reinforced with hard cork sections to prevent damage in rough coastal conditions. Despite manufacturing expense the durability is worth it. The finish is a cobalt bluewater blue.

The first model for general availability has been designed to be easy to cast in that the loading is communicated distinctly to the caster, yet the recovery of the high modulus graphite is unmistakably powerful and allows entire factory lines to be cast with even greater distances available with shooting head systems.

But distance alone is not the most important factor, it's a fishing tool first and foremost. Light in the hand, people often forget that AFTMA 11-12wt lines are less than 7/8 weight spey lines. Yet the power advantage over common single handed rods used for coastal fishing is quite significant in handling big fish and fishing conditions.

These lines can handle much larger, more wind-resistant flies. These rods can handle these lines, and the rod taper makes it easy and comfortable for the caster to handle the rod - thus the cycle completes.

About the hardest thing to conquer is that common stripping baskets are too small to handle all the running line that can be put into play!

The braided mono, as I stated before, is just a cheap experiment. I am going to invest in the premier running lines available today from Rio, Airflo, Scientific Anglers, etc. I bought the LC-13 as an easy way to calculate grains (13 grains per ft hence the name) but I am also trying Rio's Scandinavian spey heads, Airflo's expert shooting heads, etc. I would imagine a billfish floater would really put a huge popper into the zone as well, a test I will conduct shortly.

Although this point seems to keep getting lost thru the thread, this is just a junkyard wars setup patched together with paperclips and bubble gum. It does however prove that a head of approx 35 ft on a shooting line can make it very easy to approach 150ft with a single backcast on these rods. It's not intended to be a fishing line, just a proof of concept. However I can't help but wonder how it will perform in certain situations with a fly on the tippet.

Hope that clears things up!

06-21-2004, 07:55 AM

This was an old post but I wanted to comment on it. LC-13 and amnesia mono is commonly used as an actual fishing setup by the guys on Dan Blanton's board. Heads are constructed with braided mono loop to loops, usually no more than 30' for a one handed 10 weight rod.

With this setup, a 9' #10 TFO Saltwater (now Professional) and 30# Amnesia I can personally hit about 125-130' (126' is where I run out of parking lot at my practice area). Some people on Dan's board can hit over 150', a very few. LC-13 is some strong stuff, and with the braided loops it is more than adequate as a cheap fishing line, particularly where hangups would shred a $70 line or head. There's really nothing ghetto about the setup at all except for the lack of a front taper, which could be remedied with a cheap sinking head's front end, I suppose.


06-21-2004, 10:24 AM
yet despite 150' casts, most users of LC-13 in the salt (including myself) know that it's real purpose is getting down, not out. Cast 60', wait for it to sink... and hold on!

06-22-2004, 02:00 PM
Slick shooter ROCKS! I purchased polyshoot XT and it was OK... but I wanted something that did not flyaway so much on windy days from the stripping basket. So I tried 50# slick shooter and I think I am hooked! It was surprisingly easy to handle and did not tangle much at all. With a 12wt shooting head on the two-hander it was an easy thing to launch it way further than I cared to fish.

It's definitely more than just a play casting line, I enjoyed catching some nice stripers in a howling wind and ripping tide current with it. Not sure how durable it is but for the price I would buy several spools per year and not care.

06-22-2004, 02:06 PM
Do any of our sponsors stock Rio Slickshooter running line? I've checked a bunch of sites including the Rio homepage but can't find it. Hoping its not been discontinued!

Thanks! :smokin:

Greg Pavlov
06-22-2004, 04:14 PM
>I took a 100' braided mono running line, looped it and stiffened the loop with VIP,
>then put 35' of LC-13 on it to approximate 450 grains and a 10-12' leader. I tied
>a fat large rubber band on the leader for something to have on the end (handy
>for holding the line between practice sessions).

I think that I'm going to try this with a big old Garcia spinning reel and one of my
light surf rods. I doubt I'll have enough room to spool the LC13 on the reel but
the rest should fit, and will probably cast pretty well, no ? (not sure how serious
I am about this....)